Snacks / Appetizers

Agua De Sandia

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Agua De Sandia

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Last  Friday, the only “solid” food I was still able to eat was watermelon, so yesterday I bought some seedless watermelon (Sandia) to enjoy today. Well it did not work out that way. I almost choked to death from the first piece I tried to swallow. After about 20 minutes of trying to breathe normal again, my first reaction was to throw the fruit away. Then I remembered one of my favorite drinks when I was living in Mexico – “Agua De Sandia” with vodka 🙂
Obviously, no vodka for me now, but the “Agua Fresca” was a great change from my regular, room temperature plain water I have to drink nowadays.
(And Bella enjoyed the pulp).
So, when life gives you melons,……………. 
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Cheers !   Life Is Good !
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Agua De Sandia Recipe :
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Wash one large seedless watermelon thoroughly, peel, remove any seeds  (Sometimes there are a few seeds, even if you specifically buy “Seedless”).
Cut fruit into cubes, add 3 tablespoon organic honey and the juice of 2 limes. Blend until very smooth. Strain through a fine mesh strainer, chill. If you like to add ice to your drink, freeze some of the Agua Fresca in an ice cube tray, so when it melts in your drink, it adds juice, not water.
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Agua De Sandia


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Agua De Sandia


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Agua De Sandia


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Agua De Sandia


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Agua De Sandia


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Agua De Sandia


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Seafood Indulgence

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Seafood Indulgence

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In that perfect world we’re all longing for, we would all have neverending access to fresh-caught, properly handled and expertly prepared seafood, plentiful and for a reasonable price……….. 🙂
Yet, for most of us, this is but a dream.
However, thanks for modern technology improvements in transport, handling and distribution, there is abundant flash-frozen seafood available in specialty markets, top-tier seafood suppliers and even the internet.
But, in order to get the most out of this seafood, it has to be properly defrosted, cooked (if raw) and seasoned. While I want to keep my seafood chilled at all times, at the very last moment before  consumption, I like to submerge my seafood in  hot cooking liquid from the just cooked shrimp (and crawfish and crab if applicable), just for a minute or two.
This treatment will bring the flavor and texture of the seafood to a whole new level, far improved from chilled seafood fresh out of the fridge.
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !

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Click here for more  Seafood  on  ChefsOpinion
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Seafood Indulgence

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Seafood Indulgence

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add the shrimp and the simmering stock with a tongue carefully mix all together,

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures

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P.S.
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This dish is part of my upcoming meal plan # 2 –
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH TWO 
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Click here for
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH ONE

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Tomato & Parmigiano Reggiano Salad

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Tomato & Parmigiano Reggiano Salad

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Most probably, I am one of only ten people in the whole wide world who does not love Insalata Caprese .
While I am a big fan of cheese, tomato, and basil, raw mozzarella is just not my cup of tea.
Parmigiano Reggiano on the other hand, is something I could eat (and I do) for breakfast, lunch , dinner and any time in between. (Bella is also a fan).  🙂
This featured salad of Parmigiano Reggiano, tomatoes, basil and onions is something that shows up on our dinner table typically at least once a week. Usually, I make at least two or three portions, because, like so many simple foods, it tastes even better the next day. 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Click here for more  Salad  on  ChefsOpinion
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Tomato & Parmigiano Reggiano Salad

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Tomato & Parmigiano Reggiano Salad

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures

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P.S.
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This dish is part of my upcoming meal plan # 2 –
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  – 
MONTH TWO
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Click here for
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH ONE

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Salad Days Are Here To Stay……….”Carlo’s Salvation”

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Salad Days Are Here To Stay……….”Carlo’s Salvation”

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A couple of days ago I skype’d with my friend Carlos in Argentina. He informed me that he has decided to practice a healthier life style from here on.
As part of his new lifestyle, he intends to be eating lot’s of veggies and salads. However, he’s big worry is that salads and veggies are “boring” and “not real meals”.
Well, I put his mind at ease and we talked for nearly an hour about the huge variety of veggies and salads, the myriad of recipes, different ways of preparation and the endless number of combinations possible.

I also reminded him that a salad or vegetable dish can include healthy options of protein, such as poultry, seafood, game, any kind of lean meat, etc, etc.
I further reminded him that if he fancy’s a dish that he likes which has an ingredient he’d rather not eat (bacon?), he can either just substitute it with something more to his liking, or just omit it.
Furthermore, for a large variety of healthy suggestions and inspirations, there is always
HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD” 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Click here for more  Salad  on  ChefsOpinion
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Click here for  Raspberry Vinaigrette Recipe
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Salad Days Are Here To Stay……….”Carlo’s Salvation”

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plate the salad on a large serving platter, add 1 cup daikon radish sprouts, drizzle sprouts with EVO

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Salad Days Are Here To Stay……….”Carlo’s Salvation”

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Salad Days Are Here To Stay……….”Carlo’s Salvation”

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures

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P.S.
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This dish is part of my upcoming meal plan # 2 –
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH TWO
 
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Click here for
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH ONE

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Chinese Stir Fried Rice Sticks With Cabbage And Egg

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Chinese Stir Fried Rice Sticks With Cabbage And Egg

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Sometimes, when I followed my daily cravings for seafood and meat for a while, a meat-less-and seafood-less dish is all I require for a proper meal.
This dish ticks all the right boxes for me for a satisfying meal – Noodles/Cabbage/Eggs/Chili/Hoisin and Garlic, it’s all there, propped-up with a healthy dose of fresh-cracked black peppercorn, and pronto, I am ready to dig-in, enjoy and be happy. 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Click here for more  Rice Sticks  on  Chefsopinion
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Chinese Stir Fried Rice Sticks With Cabbage And Egg

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Chinese Stir Fried Rice Sticks With Cabbage And Egg

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Chinese Stir Fried Rice Sticks With Cabbage And Egg

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures

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P.S.
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This dish is part of my upcoming meal plan # 2 –
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH TWO 
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Click here for  
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH ONE

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Peel & Eat Chili / Garlic Shrimp

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Peel & Eat Chili / Garlic Shrimp

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Attention !!!   Bib and lot’s of paper towels required   🙂 
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Click here for more  Shrimp  on  ChefsOpinion
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Peel & Eat Chili / Garlic Shrimp

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Peel & Eat Chili / Garlic Shrimp

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Peel & Eat Chili / Garlic Shrimp

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures

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P.S.
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This dish is part of my upcoming meal plan # 2 –
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH TWO 
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Click here for  
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH ONE

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Haricots Verts En Salade

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Haricots Verts En Salade

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There is “Bean Salad” – and then, there is THIS “Bean Salad”!  🙂
Whether enjoyed as a snack, appetizer or main course – this bean salad ticks off all the marks for a wonderful salad: Beautiful, tasty and satisfying.
What else could you ask for from a salad? 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Click here for more  Salad  on  ChefsOpinion
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Haricots Verts En Salade

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Haricots Verts En Salade

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Haricots Verts En Salade

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures

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P.S.
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This dish is part of my upcoming meal plan # 2 –
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH TWO 
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Click here for  
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH ONE

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Salade De Gésiers (Romaine and Red Onions In Tarragon Vinaigrette, With Chili Gizzards & Honey Garlic Yogurt)

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Salade De Gésiers (Romaine and Red Onions In Tarragon Vinaigrette, With Chili Gizzards & Honey Garlic Yogurt)

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As loyal readers of ChefsOpinion, by now you know of my love of innards and lesser cuts of animals – feet, heart, necks, liver, tails, kidneys, tripe, marrow, tongue,etc.
I fully understand that not everybody is a fan, but on the other hand, many people are.
Today’s featured salad contains chicken gizzards, which are always a special treat for me. (If you prefer another part of the chicken, such as breast or leg, go right ahead – the taste will be nearly the same, but of course you’ll loose-out on the texture). The length of the cooking time of gizzards is VERY important – too short and thy will be too tough to enjoy, too long, and the wonderful texture will be gone and you will be left with hopeless crap. Usually, they will need about one to two hours of simmering or braising before frying or sauteing (Or saute them first, then braise one to two hours). Either way, if you are one of the many folks who love them, the time and effort is well worth the time 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Click here for  Tarragon Vinaigrette Recipe
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Click here for more  Gizzards  on  ChefsOpinion
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Salade De Gésiers (Romaine and Red Onions In Tarragon Vinaigrette, With Chili Gizzards & Honey Garlic Yogurt)

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Salade De Gésiers (Romaine and Red Onions In Tarragon Vinaigrette, With Chili Gizzards & Honey Garlic Yogurt)

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Salade De Gésiers (Romaine and Red Onions In Tarragon Vinaigrette. With Chili Gizzards & Honey Garlic Yogurt)

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures
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P.S.
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This dish is part of my upcoming meal plan # 2 –
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH TWO 
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Click here for 
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH ONE

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Pulpo a la Gallega (Galician Style Octopus)

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Pulpo a la Gallega (Galician Style Octopus)

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A Coruña La Coruña ) is a city which I have often visited when I was a young man, about forty years ago.
Sabela, one of my friends from this other life, lived on the outskirts of the city with her parents, who at the time, probably imagined I’d be their future son in law 🙂
However, Sabela’s mom was a wonderful cook, and I remember many great meals in their house. The one dish that to this day still stands out in my mind is “Pulpo a la Gallega”.
This was a dish that I enjoyed in a much simpler version on a daily base, whenever Sabela and I hit the tapas bars, pulpo being one of my all-time favorite tapas. In the bar’s, “Pulpo a la Gallega” was simply octopus cooked until tender, then doused with olive oil and sprinkled with sea salt and smoked paprika. However, at Sabela’s home, her mother turned this into a full main course, which is the dish I present here. It contains the basic ingredients – pulpo, olive oil, sea salt and smoked paprika, but then, onions, potatoes, garlic, chilies and cilantro are added. And there you have it – pulpo heaven on earth 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Click here for more  Octopus  on  ChefsOpinion
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Click here for more  Pulpo  on  ChefsOpinion
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Pulpo a la Gallega (Galician Style Octopus)

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Pulpo a la Gallega (Galician Style Octopus)

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Pulpo a la Gallega (Galician Style Octopus)

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures

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P.S.
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This dish is part of my upcoming meal plan # 2 –
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH TWO 
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Click here for 
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH ONE

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Crabmeat, Baby Arugula, Avocado, Egg And Grape Tomato Salad In Honey/Mustard Vinaigrette

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Crabmeat, Baby Arugula, Avocado, Egg And Grape Tomato Salad In Honey/Mustard Vinaigrette

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This beautiful, tasty salad proofs once again that healthy food does not have to be ugly, tasteless or boring !
On the contrary, when looking at this lovely salad, who would not love to have a portion (or two) of this beauty right now ? 🙂
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P.S.

As usual, use the best crabmeat you can afford.
Or, in a pinch, use kani kama, or substitute the crabmeat with shrimp, lobster or even diced roast- or sauteed chicken.

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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Click here for more  Salad  on  ChefsOpinion
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Honey/Mustard Vinaigrette Recipe :
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1/4 cup white balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup EVO
1/4 cup organic honey
2 tablespoons dijon mustard
Kosher salt and cayenne pepper to taste
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Whisk all ingredients until emulsified.

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Crabmeat, Baby Arugula, Avocado, Egg And Grape Tomato Salad In Honey/Mustard Vinaigrette

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Crabmeat, Baby Arugula, Avocado, Egg And Grape Tomato Salad In Honey/Mustard Vinaigrette

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Crabmeat, Baby Arugula, Avocado, Egg And Grape Tomato Salad In Honey/Mustard Vinaigrette

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Crabmeat, Baby Arugula, Avocado, Egg And Grape Tomato Salad In Honey/Mustard Vinaigrette

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures
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P.S.
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This dish is part of my upcoming meal plan # 2 –
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH TWO 
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Click here for 
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH ONE
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